The U.S. Attorney’s Office Northern District of Texas on August 24, 2011 released the following:
“FEDERAL GRAND JURY INDICTS ADDITIONAL DEFENDANTS FOR ROLE IN CONSPIRACY TO EMBEZZLE FROM CITY OF GARLAND, TEXAS
Former City of Garland Employee, Patricia Leathers, is Currently Serving a 57-Month Prison Sentence for Her Role in the Conspiracy
DALLAS — A federal grand jury in Dallas has indicted three defendants for their role in a conspiracy to embezzle from the City of Garland, Texas, announced U.S. Attorney James T. Jacks of the Northern District of Texas. Kenneth Wayne Brown, 50, of Denison, Texas; Duane Milford Stailey, 44, and his wife, Sharon Ware Stailey, 45, both of Leonard, Texas, are each charged with one count of conspiracy to commit theft from a program receiving federal funds.
Patricia Leathers, 63, of Rowlett, Texas, a former risk management adjustor for the City of Garland, pleaded guilty in December 2010 to the same offense. She is presently serving a 57-month sentence at the Federal Medical Center Carswell in Fort Worth, Texas. Leathers was also ordered to pay $1,968,479 in restitution to the City of Garland. Leathers’ sister, Connie M. Powell, 60, of Garland, also pleaded guilty to her role in the conspiracy. She was sentenced to a three-year term of probation and ordered to pay $64,142 in restitution.
The indictment alleges that from August 1999 through March 2008, the three defendants conspired with each other and others to embezzle from the City of Garland by creating false claims for damage and repairs to personal and real property. The reimbursement checks, issued in the true names of the defendants, as well as fictitious names, were cashed by the defendants who then shared the proceeds with Leathers.
According to the indictment, Brown endorsed and negotiated at least 14 City of Garland checks, totaling more than $102,000. In addition, Duane and Sharon Stailey fraudulently negotiated and shared in the proceeds of City of Garland checks totaling at least $482,000 of which they deposited more than $129,000 into their joint bank account.
An indictment is an accusation by a federal grand jury, and a defendant is entitled to the presumption of innocence unless proven guilty. However, if convicted, each face a maximum statutory sentence of five years in prison and a $250,000 fine. Restitution could be ordered.
The investigation was conducted by the FBI, the Garland Police Department, and the Garland Offices of the City Attorney and Internal Auditor. Assistant U.S. Attorney Katherine Miller is prosecuting the case.”
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